Magalie Austin, Democratic fundraiser, appointed to New York’s Capital Building Agency

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Photo via NAAHP website.

NEW YORK — Former de Blasio administration official and Democratic fundraiser Magalie D. Austin is the last Haitian-American appointed to a prominent role under Mayor Eric Adams.

As Executive Deputy Commissioner of the New York City Department of Design and Construction (NYC DDC), Austin will oversee the Office of Diversity and Industry Relations, Human Resources, Development and staff training, as well as community partnerships and STEAM initiatives. The agency made the announcement public via Twitter.

DDC is the city’s capital construction agency with a budget of $213.9 million for fiscal year 2022. The agency manages the construction of various public buildings and infrastructure projects in the five boroughs. Works on public buildings include fire stations, libraries, police stations and courthouses and works on infrastructure include installing/upgrading sewers, water pipes, roads , sidewalks and ramps for pedestrians.

Austin will work to “increase contracting opportunities for minority and women’s business entities,” according to the NYC Women’s Builders Council, a group of women workers within NYC DDC.

Austin joins DCC after serving as its Director of Diversity and Industry Relations from 2014-2020. From 2020-2022, she served as Senior Advisor and Director of the Office of Minority and Women-Owned Businesses in administration of Blasio. She has a background in law and graduated from Tulane University with a JD in 1995.

Among Haitian-American politicians, Austin and her husband, Dr. Jean-Philippe Austin, a radiation oncologist, are known supporters of the Democratic Party who have hosted fundraising dinners for such high-profile leaders as former President Barack. Obama and President Joe Biden. In 2007, the couple co-hosted a fundraiser for Senator Obama at their Miami home. The couple held an additional fundraiser of $38,500 per plate for Obama in 2011 during his re-election bid, one for Michelle Obama and another for Biden.

Revision: This article has been revised from the original version based on information provided by a NYC DDC spokesperson. The city’s executive budget is $98.6 billion, while the annual NYC DDC executive budget is $213.9 million. The department’s design-build portfolio is handling 19 projects this year, but overall there are a total of more projects per year within NYC DDC.

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